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Scottie Pippen blames Michael Jordan for not winning the DPOY award in his career

Scottie Pippen thinks Michael Jordan had something to do with why he didn't win a DPOY. Here's why he's wrong about his claim.
Scottie Pippen blames Michael Jordan for not winning DPOY in his career

Scottie Pippen pinned the blame on his partner for the media not voting for him to win the DPOY in an interview

Basketball fans who watched the 90s Chicago Bulls know Scottie Pippen is one of the all-time greats on defense. So why did Pippen never win even one Defensive Player of the Year award in his 17-year career? He revealed the simple reason was the existence of Michael Jordan.

Pippen vs Jordan

The relationship between Scottie and Michael is beyond repair after all the criticism and rants we've seen Pippen point towards Jordan. Pippen called out Jordan and revealed allegations that put MJ's credentials in question. However, fans understood that Pip did that to promote his book. Months after the release of his book, Scottie is still at it and pinned the blame on his partner for the media not voting for him to win the DPOY in an interview with Bastien Fontanieu of TrashTalkProduction.

"I think they were too busy watching Michael."

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Was MJ too mesmerizing to watch in his heydays that it took the attention away from his teammates? Part of why the Bulls were successful was that the players did their roles perfectly. They played within the Phil Jackson system and chose winning over longer playing time and probably more lucrative contracts.

Was Pippen deserving of a DPOY award?

Scottie deserved to win a DPOY at least once, but the reason why he never did was not MJ but the great competition he had at that time.

Let's look at other great defenders in that era: Gary Payton, Dennis Rodman, and Dikembe Mutombo, among others. Big men ruled that era of NBA basketball, and wing defenders didn't receive the same amount of love from the media regarding the DPOY award. Plus, Pippen wasn't really a defensive player by trade. Instead, he is a combo-forward good at playmaking, scoring, and defending and his "jack-of-all-trades" skillset hurt his chances of winning a DPOY or an MVP.

In his career, Pippen's defensive rating is at 101.4, which is still lower than the defensive rating of Gary Payton (105.6) but greater than Dikembe Mutombo's (99.1). Based on StatsMuse, Pip's best chance of winning the DPOY was in the 1989-90 season, where he recorded the highest defensive rating of his career at 105.3. However, the award went to Detroit Pistons' Dennis Rodman, who only had a 101.4 defensive rating that year. Not only that, Pip wasn't even among the nominees for the award. Instead, the list was composed of Dennis Rodman, Hakeem Olajuwon, Joe Dumars, Derek Harper, and Mark Eaton, rounding up the top five. MJ was nominated after submitting a 105.5 defensive rating but failed to win it.

Winning DPOY is not solely based on defensive rating. It all boils down to doing the little things that do not reflect on the stats sheet, such as intimidating opponents or applying pressure. That is why Marcus Smart winning DPOY was somewhat controversial to stats geeks, but fans and players approved it.

Pippen not winning DPOY and pinning the blame on MJ was ridiculous. At this point, it seems like he's doing it on purpose for the clout

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